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Dear friends, Scholars, and colleagues,

Welcome to the fourth UCSC Doris Duke Conservation Scholars Program Newsletter. If you'd like to be added to our newsletter email list, click here. The newsletter is too long for Gmail so we would suggest reading it in your browser.
In this edition:
The joys of in-person experiences!
Welcome Amy Sánchez, Program Coordinator
Our community continues to grow
Follow us year-round
A unique field experience for 20 intrepid Scholars
2021 Summer Internships in Santa Cruz
New research from DDCSP staff on diversity and anti-racism efforts
Alumni Highlights
 
UCSC DDCSP on Twitter
UCSC DDCSP on LinkedIn
UCSC DDCSP Website
conservationscholars @ Instagram

The joys of in-person experiences!

We are feeling immensely grateful to have resumed in-person programming this past summer. It would not have been possible without the support of our campus, Scholars, staff, and internship mentors. The 2020 cohort finally connected in person, strengthening its bonds during Santa Cruz based internships while the 2021 Cohort embarked on an 8-week journey across California building skills in conservation research, communication and leadership.

Applications for the 2022 Cohort will be open from October 15th until February 1st.
Please lookout for an announcement email to share widely!

 

Welcome Amy Sánchez, Program Coordinator

We are thrilled to have Amy Sánchez join the permanent team here in Santa Cruz.  Amy brings a dual background in biology and education (B.Sc., M.Ed), and past experience with the UW Doris Duke Conservation Scholars Program.

Hello DDCSP community! Since the last newsletter I stepped into the role of Program Coordinator for both DDCSP and CAMINO at UCSC. It was an exciting summer as both the 2020 and the 2021 cohort came together for an in person summer program after a year of being remote! I had the pleasure of getting to know the 2020 cohort in Santa Cruz and organize their internship symposium. I’m looking forward to continuing my role in supporting the growth of the fantastic community.

Our community continues to grow -- get involved!  

With over 100 program alums, there are more ways than ever to be involved.

  • We are always looking to bring alumni into the first summer program. Contact us if you are interested in being a visitor, or taking on a larger staff role. If summers are packed, there are other ways to engage with the program as advisors and more, just reach out.
  • This fall brought new cohort representatives to the UCSC DDCSP Alumni Group. Alums and supporters can volunteer to host virtual events and regional in-person gatherings.
  • We are excited to see Storm Lewis, Wanjiku Gatheru and Diana Martinez join the DDCSP Network Steering Committee. Make sure to update your network profile, email address and check out network events.

Follow us year-round 

Follow us on Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram! On Twitter, you can follow all of our scholars using this list. On LinkedIn, you can connect with alumni and current scholars.

Over on Instagram, we are planning Scholar IG takeovers and recently posted a bunch of alumni highlights!

UCSC DDCSP on Twitter
UCSC DDCSP on LinkedIn
conservationscholars @ Instagram
UCSC DDCSP Website

A unique field experience for 20 intrepid Scholars

This summer, Scholars spent eight continuous weeks traveling California in a highly unconventional, COVID bubbled, domestic unit with six DDCSP staff. Our summer began at Blue Oak Ranch Reserve in the San Jose foothills and continued north to the Point Reyes Field Station (& National Seashore) before heading to the Eastern Sierras where we stayed at the Sierra Nevada Aquatic Research Lab and at the White Mountains Research Center all the way up at 10,000 feet! For final projects, Scholars studied the ecology of the recently burned Big Creek Reserve in Big Sur before returning to Blue Oak Ranch to finish the summer. During our travels, we had over 20 professional guests, explored a constellation of themes in conservation, and honed personal narratives through an expanded storytelling curriculum.

2021 Summer Internships in Santa Cruz

Scholars of the 2020 cohort had the opportunity to meet in person this summer! Having made it through their first summer online, 19 of the 20 DDCSP scholars were brought together in Santa Cruz for internships around the Bay Area. Placed with local non-profits and academic labs, Scholars traveled to sites such as Año Nuevo Island, Elkhorn Slough, and Point Reyes to conduct their research. Graduate Mentor Laura Goetz, helped them build community, by planning tide-pooling excursions, day hikes, and hosting a diversity of guest speakers. Their summer culminated in the programs' first in-person Internship Research Symposium where their mentors, family, and friends, and UCSC Chancellor, Dr. Cynthia K. Larive, were able to listen to their research presentations.
This year DDCSP Staff published three papers drawing from experiences with this program to stimulate wider conversation around equitable and effective conservation.
 

Alumni Highlights

Hanan C. Farah (2016) is a 2nd year Ph.D. student at the University of Minnesota in the Isbell Biodiversity Lab. She studies grassland ecology with a focus on nutrient disturbance and plant biodiversity recovery. She's also passionate about environmental justice and is working to better understand systemic barriers for marginalized communities accessing green space.
 
Eric Medina (2016) has recently became a Restoration and Education Steward at the UC Santa Cruz’s Younger Lagoon Reserve. Eric spends most days in the field carrying out restoration work and facilitating programs bringing people to the reserve. You can check out his staff welcome video!
Daniella Smith (2018) has partnered with the USDA Forest Service and Mobilize Green as a Visitor Information Resource Assistant in Lone Pine, California. When she's not issuing wilderness permits, or educating the public on natural resource conservation, she is exploring Inyo National Forest and chatting with visitors on the trails.
Chris Clark (2019) is a 2021 RAY Marine Conservation Fellow at the Natural Resources Defense Council Oceans program. For the next two years he will be working on a range of ocean issues, including California's 30x30 campaign, illegal fishing, and a ballot measure on plastics.
 
Joe Hernandez (2019) started a year-long internship with the National Park Service - Rivers, Trails, and Conservation Assistance Program in St. Paul, Minnesota. He's excited to spend the year helping communities with effective outdoor recreation planning before entering a geography M.Sc. program at ASU.
Furthermore, good luck to Scholars starting new graduate programs this fall! If you are starting school and are not on this list, remember to let us know.
  • Ashia Ajani, Ph.D. in Environmental Studies at the University of Oregon
  • Lambert Ngenzi, MEM at the Duke Nicholas School of the Environment
  • Melissa Lopez, Masters in Sustainable Design at Stanford University
  • Storm Lewis, M.Sc. at Yale School of the Environment
  • Jahiya Clark, M.Sc. in Environmental Conservation at UMass - Amherst
  • Claudio Amaya, Ph.D. in Chemistry at Virginia Tech
  • Julianna Ramirez, M.Sc. at Virginia Institute of Marine Science
  • Omar Torres, M.Sc. at Central Washington University

Final Thoughts

As we wrap up the busiest summer in our program's history, we're filled with gratitude for program supporters, mentors, and Scholars. We look forward to sharing more updates in the spring newsletter, and via social media channels. If this was forwarded to you, make sure to subscribe, and check out past newsletters.
 

With our warm wishes,

Abraham Borker,
Program Director

Prof. Dan Hernández,
Faculty Mentor

Amy Sánchez,
Program Coordinator 

Prof. Erika Zavaleta,
Faculty Director

UCSC DDCSP on Twitter
UCSC DDCSP on LinkedIn
conservationscholars @ Instagram
UCSC DDCSP Website
Copyright © 2021 UCSC Doris Duke Conservation Scholars Program, All rights reserved.

The land from which we base our work is the unceded territory of the Awaswas-speaking Uypi Tribe. The Amah Mutsun Tribal Band, comprised of the descendants of indigenous people taken to missions Santa Cruz and San Juan Bautista during Spanish colonization of the Central Coast, is today working hard to restore traditional stewardship practices on these lands and heal from historical trauma.

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